Browsing Tag


Live in the Big Show

Live in the Big Show

Dearest Grandson,

You know that baseball players in the minor leagues dream of improving their offense – hitting the ball – and their defense – fielding the ball – so that one day they will be promoted to a Major League Baseball team. They call it “The Show.”

Right now, you’re like those young players with their big dreams.

Right now, you’re still in the minors – childhood, that is – learning, growing, developing talents, acquiring new skills. All these are important, but what’s most important as you strive for the majors – The Show – is framing a life that is built on character … who you are and what you show (your verb, your action) … in living a life that is BIG … as you aim for The Show (your noun, your appearance).

And right now, you’re NINE. Something about NINE and baseball. NINE players. NINE innings.

So, what I want to share with you NINE fundamentals that I believe will help position you to Live in the Big Show, help give you a good eye at the plate, help you field a bad hop, help you wear both competiveness and compassion on your uniform.

1 Show gratitude.

Be thankful for all the good in your life. Talk about being thankful. Show your gratitude to others. Say “thank you” every day. Especially to God.  You’re never off on the wrong foot when you step out in gratitude. You can’t think about bad stuff when you’re thankful and keep your mind on the good stuff.

Whatever happens, in every situation, no matter what the circumstances, no matter what the score, be grateful and continually give thanks to God.

2 Show forgiveness.

You will make errors, others will make the errors, but God forgives. We should too. Seek to have powers of forgiveness and love and you’ll be super. Accept life, and be most patient and tolerant with others, always ready to forgive if you have a difference with anyone. Forgive as freely as the Lord has forgiven you. Don’t be angry with others, but forgive one another. Never hold grudges. Have a loving and understanding heart. If you feel someone has wronged you, forgive them because that’s what God says.

3 Show faith.

When you keep believing – whether you win or lose – you are choosing to hold on to faith. Stay faithful and trust God from the bottom of your heart; don’t try to figure out everything on your own. Keep the words of the King of Managers, Jesus, in your heart when He said to “Have faith in God.” Without faith it’s impossible to play the game of life and walk with God. My all-time favorite verse, the logo on my pennant, is Luke 1:37, “For with God nothing shall be impossible.”

4 Show kindness.

You will be amazed how much of a difference you can make by just smiling every time you talk to someone. You have the power, the gift, to change someone’s life with small gestures:  a tip of the cap, a hello, a thank you. Be kind and patient and understanding to everyone. Clothe yourselves with a uniform of compassion and mercy, gentleness and patience.

5 Show integrity.

Be honest and true in all you do each day. Play by the rules and do what is right and fair, even when it’s hard, even when you get a bad call. Make your decisions based on the strong values you have learned. Treat all the people you meet that there is something worthwhile in them, because when you play and live with integrity and with moral character, you live securely. Keep your eyes open, hold tight to your convictions, give it all you’ve got. Become a role model of good actions for your teammates. Show integrity, seriousness, and set a good example for everyone. Go out of your way to do what is right, and speak the truth. No one can argue with that.

6 Show respect.

Treat everyone with consideration and respect, no matter what team they cheer. People notice how you treat others. Honor others the same way you want to be honored. In whatever you do, don’t let selfishness or pride be your guide. Instead, be humble, and value others more than yourselves.

7 Show friendship.

Be that friend who thinks of others, who is thoughtful and considerate, who nourishes the goodness in another person. Pursue friendship and happiness will happen. Encourage your friends, cheer for them, help them, and tell them how much you care about them. Build up their hope. Be truly loving, for love is the best rule in the playbook. Love your friends, your teammates, deeply. Jesus said, “This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.”  Let your love and friendship extend to everyone, especially those on the end of the bench, for love is from God.

8 Show service.

You follow God’s way when you give and serve others. You get energy from following your passions, from committing to people and service and causes. Compassion isn’t waiting; it’s doing. Compassion isn’t watching; it’s helping. You have been blessed with special abilities from God to be used in the service of others. So use your gift well, passing on to others God’s many kinds of blessings. Show generosity, be rich in the good things you do, and share with others.

9 Show the love of Jesus.

The best way to improve your life, your position, your relationships with teammates and with others, is to act like Him. Love doesn’t give up. Love doesn’t lose faith. Love is hopeful, no matter the score. Love endures through all circumstances. And that’s the love of Jesus you show to everyone. Be Like Jesus. When you show love, you share in joy and happiness and wonder and goodness. And that’s always the winning way.

So, during your young years, your training days (and really, for all your life), I pray that you will SHOW these NINE fundamentals as you advance from the minor leagues and into the major leagues. Into The SHOW.

Happy NINTH birthday!

I love you! God bless you. Always.



Happy Tuesdays

Tuesdays make me happy.

I find myself bubbling with joy in anticipation of Tuesdays.

(1) Bible Study meets on Tuesdays

It’s been ten years since my friend Gail asked me to go with her to the Tuesday night women’s Bible study at church.

I was hooked. And Tuesdays became a favorite day.

Because of those girls.

Yes, the studies, the sessions, even the homework, were all blessings and strengthened me, improved me, expanded my knowledge and faith.

But, moreso, it was about the girls. The lovelies. The friendships.

We began as a group of twelve, single and married, mothers of babies, mothers of school kids, mothers of grown-ups, grandmothers. Some were employed; some not. Some were raised in Christian homes and some in chaotic homes. We were a mix of quiet and loud, introverted and extroverted.

Week by week as we shared and prayed over all kinds of issues – health, marriage, children, jobs, parents, divorce, struggles, fears – the friendships developed.

Over the years of Bible studies every spring and fall, our group saw changes: some of the lovelies moved on to other groups (that’s okay, love ‘em anyway); some moved away (now we’re Facebook friends). What had been a dozen became a small cluster of seven or eight.

Of course, the one night I go casual with my favorite Cubs sweatshirt, they decide to take a group photo! (2006)

Of course, the one night I go casual with my favorite Cubs sweatshirt, they decide to take a group photo! (2006)

And then, about seven years ago, I invited the lovelies to meet at my house for the Tuesday studies instead of the church’s fellowship hall. (Well, truth be told, our group “maybe” became a bit noisy, “maybe” rebelled about the study selection, “maybe” because we were slow learners {or possibly lazy}, and “maybe” needed to meet every other Tuesday and not weekly.)

Every single time I meet with my Tuesday lovelies, I feel refreshed and restored. This is because we listen to one another’s needs, and we unite our hearts in studying God’s Word, and we pray together.

Every single time I feel happy and joyful and overflowing  with love. This is because we encourage one another, and we have (kinda non-judgmental) comments about clothing and hair styles (inside joke), and we laugh together. And I supply chocolate.

My heart is so full and thankful for the lovelies. For the friendships.

(2) Girls Night Out meets on Tuesdays

Since Bible Study was every other Tuesday, that freed up an open Tuesday for the monthly GNO with a small group of friends. A night dining in a fancy-pants (or not) restaurant. A night sharing the good and not-so-good stuff of our everyday lives. A night with desserts and wine.

My story and their stories, the everyday parts of them. The ordinary and extraordinary, the hard and the happy.

These girls. These friendships.

In every season, especially the hard ones, God was always been faithful to bring those into my life to love me well. And that I can love well in return.

I know my friends will fight for me, stand with me.

I don’t have to be brave alone.

Every single time I go dining with my Tuesday girls, I’m grateful that I have friends who I can be “me” with.

Every single time I’m overwhelmed that I have friends who I can be honest, fun, crazy, scared, open and messy with. I have friends who have allowed me to be both broken and together.

God has given them to me as gifts and I need to hold on to them the way I allow them to hold on to me.

Because I know this: the secret to being loved is to love. And the secret to having a friend is being a friend.

My heart is so full and thankful for these girls. For the friendships.

(3) NCIS airs on Tuesdays.

Then on those days I don’t see my lovelies or my girls’ group, there’s NCIS.

My heart is so full and thankful for Leroy Jethro Gibbs, for Anthony DiNozzo.

Need I say more?


And that, my friends, is why I love Tuesdays.